Previous research and critical writing regarding Film Noir have been in the context of literature, gender studies and the like. This paper will attempt to take a historical focus and perspective regarding this unique period of American Film history and its influence on a society searching for a means to escape the daily routine and tribulations of war, crime and a changing way of life. Pre-industrialized America was mostly an agrarian society based on myth, and ideologies of property ownership and expansion of the west. The coming of the twentieth century ushered in a mass consumer society with no new myths to entertain fantasies and a national identity in crisis. Film noir is a complicated genus, although complicated and shrouded in controversy its impact on American society and culture is extraordinary. As it echoed the mood and evolution of a country in transition from a disjointed society to one with a common goal of a nation.
Understanding how Film Noir reflected the political, social and cultural changes in America is accomp...
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Touch of Evil. Directed by Orson Welles. Performed by Charlton Heston Orson Welles. 1958.
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